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How Can I Repair My Credit?

By Sari R. Updated on 11/3/2014

Bad credit scoreYour credit is one of the most important financial tools that you possess. Your credit can help determine if you can finance that car you want, obtain the mortgage loan for the home you want to live in, or open credit accounts with stores. Building and developing credit can be a very valuable thing. However, credit when mismanaged can be disastrous to many people.

Many times it is not the borrower's fault. Medical bills can add up, jobs can be lost, and other unforeseen situations can happen. It can happen to the best of us.

You may wonder what to do once your credit has been damaged. Or, if you have okay credit, you may wonder how you can improve it even more. There are many things you can do to aid in your own credit repair. There are agencies out there that specialize in credit repair, but you do need to watch that you are dealing with a reputable agency. Since there are so many things you can do to improve your own credit, why not take advantage of the self help options available to you for your own credit repair.

1. Dispute credit report inaccuracies.

The first thing to do is to get a copy of your credit report. You can get one free report each year. Go over the report with a detailed eye, looking for any discrepancies or inaccuracies. Report these inaccuracies to one of the credit bureaus and creditors right away. The Fair Credit Reporting Act allows you to dispute these items on your credit report. Creditors must then verify the information.

2. Examine your spending. 

Once you have cleared up inaccuracies, it is time to look at your financial habits. It's a good idea to look at your income and expenses and make a budget. Cut corners now so that you can pay off more of your debts. Paying the minimum monthly due on your debts won't help you to pay them off faster, but it will keep creditors happy and show a consistent payment record on your part. Paying on your debts will help to improve your credit score. Both the consistent monthly payments and paying down of the actual debt amount are looked upon favorably. You might want to start paying off the debt with the highest interest rate first. Or, you might want to pay off the smallest debt (in dollar amount) and work your way up through your list of debts. No matter which way you choose to go about it, this will help your credit report tremendously.

3. Prepare for the future. 

Be careful how many new credit accounts you open. One thing that will be unfavorable and bring your credit score down, is if you have too many credit accounts open and they all have balances. You have heard the saying that having too much of a good thing is a bad thing, right? Well in the case of credit, this is true, especially when it comes to your credit report. Don't open new credit if you can avoid it until after you have paid off most of your major balances. Be selective about which accounts you open. These habits will also help your overall credit profile.

Looking for faster ways to boost credit? Look at some of our quickest tips here

About The Author:
Sari R.
Sari R. is a mortgage editor for Lender411com. She graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Screenwriting and Public Relations/Advertising from Chapman University. She can be reached at sarelyn@lender411com.

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